GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: Amid failure to convene a meeting with the Federal Member States despite all of them pitching camp in Mogadishu for about a week now, the Federal Government has summoned the Baidoa Technical Committee Thursday sparking protests from a section of regional governments.
The state-owned news agency SONNA reported Thursday that a second round of the committee meeting kicked off at a hotel within Aden Adde Airport. Goobjoog News has learnt that representatives from HirShabelle, Banaadir, Galmudug and South West attended the meeting with the unsurprising absence of Jubbaland and Puntland.
Jubbaland state minister at the office of the president Hirsi Ganni said his state is not part and unaware of the meeting. “Jubaland is not part of and is not aware of any meeting that has opened for a technical committee as a prelude to a post-conference meeting,” Ganni said.
The committee formed by the Federal Government and FMS submitted its findings last month following a meeting in Baidoa. It said it had settled the contentious issues in the long-running electoral negotiations and urged Farmaajo to convene a meeting with the FMS leaders to finalise the deal.
Sources have told Goobjoog News today’s meeting is a ploy to buy time after Farmaajo failed to set a meeting despite all the FMS leaders making way to Mogadishu. There are fears also that the meeting could be used to amend the February report in what could further exacerbate an already fragile political environment.
The electoral impasse has been marred by unending demands and counter demands by both sides making it increasingly difficult to reach a deal. Even after all the FMS leaders agreed to travel to Mogadishu, the venue of the talks became another point of difference. While Deni and Madobe demanded it be hosted by the UN within its compounds or airport area, Qoorqoor and his South West ally Abdiaziz Lafta Gareen insisted on Villa Somalia.
Amid the FGS-FMS row, it is also emerging that an intra-FMS tiff is ensuing. Goobjoog News has learnt that reconciliation talks between Qoorqoor and his Puntland counterpart Abdullahi Deni are underway. This followed a blistering attack on Qoorqoor and Farmaajo by Deni last month. Sources said the Galmudug leader was still ‘bitter’ about the remarks.
Meanwhile, Qoorqoor who met the Council of Presidential Candidates (CPC) upon arrival in Mogadishu this week is seeking to reclaim his earlier status which had set him as a broker between Farmaajo’s camp and the opposition. Qoorqoor was cajoled by the CPC to beware of ‘blind loyalty’ of Farmaajo and that ‘we still have confidence in you’ a source said.
INCLUDE SHARIF AND HASSAN SHEIKH
Goobjoog News has also established that both Ahmed Madobe (Jubbaland) and Deni want the inclusion of former presidents Sharif Sheikh Ahmed and his successor Hassan Sheikh Mohamud in the next round of electoral talks. The two former leaders who are running for the presidency are senior members of the CPC.
Farmaajo has however in recent weeks stood ground against any negotiations on the talks and instead rooted for the endorsement of the Baidoa deal and its implementation.
There are yet no signs of a meeting between the two sides as the country awaits answers.